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President & CEO's Report for October 2012

October 10, 2012


You may recall that two well known members of the media – Anderson Cooper and Bill O’Reilly – praised our work earlier this year. Now we have also received recognition from politicians on the opposite ends of the political spectrum - President Clinton, Governor Christie and Congressman Garrett. Not only is it extremely gratifying to have their acknowledgment of past achievements and future plans, it is also once again affirming of our intention to be independent and nonpartisan in our work. In these times of political gridlock we are heartened by such bipartisan acknowledgement! In the case of Governor Christie and Congressman Garrett, it was to acknowledge the accomplishments leading to our 10 year anniversary as a web site dedicated to guiding intelligent giving. In the case of President Clinton, it was to acknowledge our pledge at the Clinton Global Initiative (they refer to the pledge as a “commitment”) to accomplish even more over the coming years by setting in motion work on our three primary goals.

An issue that we have long spoken out on seems to be getting quite a bit of notice recently. That is the use of telemarketers to solicit funds on behalf of charities. Recently, I was interviewed by Bloomberg News about it and they ended up writing an excellent article on the topic. They also posted a three minute video of their interview with me. You can find a link to the article and the video on my blog. Visit the “Tips for Donors” section of our site for our advice on how to handle phone calls you receive from those claiming to represent charities.

#GivingTuesday is a new effort to encourage charitable giving/social investing and volunteering. The goal is to encourage all of us to give to charity during the Thanksgiving holiday time period. It is a time when we typically gather with family and friends on a Thursday to have a big meal and be thankful for what we have, followed by Black Friday (one of biggest shopping days of the year) and Cyber Monday (an online shopping day). The thinking of the creators of #GivingTuesday is to also get people to consciously focus on a day of giving back during this time period as a very important means of sharing what we have with others. I was interviewed to provide some basic advice to people who are planning to participate. Our site contains more information about #GivingTuesday and you can go to my blog to watch my 3 minute interview.

Finally, I am delighted to introduce our newest Board member, Mr. Michael Dix. His very successful career included a significant period of time working as General Manager at Microsoft. Currently, he is the Founder/Managing Partner of Intentional Futures. Welcome aboard!

Until next time - all the best,

Photo captions (in order from top to bottom):

  • Image of Ken Berger shaking hands with former President Clinton at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual meeting taken by Paul Morse.
  • Letter from Governor Christie
  • Certificate of Recognition from Congressman Garrett


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